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Poster: light into ashes Date: Aug 3, 2011 1:33am
Forum: GratefulDead Subject: Re: What Do You Like About The 80's ?

Well, through the summer of '83 Jerry & Weir had been working on these guitar duets as the "space" - this one was the first I heard, and remained my favorite. Being limited to 2 guitars gives it a very open, uncluttered feel rare in the Dead's '80s music. I took it as basically a long tease - at the start they shift between Spanish Jam & Other One motifs, then later on Jerry plays a couple pretty melodic themes that sound like they're going into something familiar, but they keep backing off and circling around...something... Then the something turns out to be St Stephen. But even if you didn't know that was coming next, it was fascinating for me to hear how closely they follow each other into new patterns.

The Taping Compendium describes it well:
"Bob lays down a wonderful grouping of simple chords...Jerry makes a dark, sweet statement over them. Bob then suggests the Spanish Jam. Jerry thoughtfully replies. But while the two flirt with Spain, they never fully go there... One might think that this would be a frustrating experience for the listener...but it is a wonderful flirtation, a truly poetic moment, for the two are so in sync that when they move to other related themes, the digression is in itself hypnotic. This goes on for several minutes as they ebb and flow between loud silences and furious flurries of subtle activity... Bob shifts from playing minor chord patterns into a major chord theme, and in turn the jam goes from deliciously dark to lyrically bright. Then Bob starts hammering bell-like harmonics to which Jerry replies with the opening notes of St Stephen."

The Stephen itself is the best one of '83 - meaning it's just OK & not very enthusiastic, kind of collapses at the end; but the best part of the evening had already been played.

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Poster: jerlouvis Date: Aug 3, 2011 9:26am
Forum: GratefulDead Subject: Re: What Do You Like About The 80's ?

I found that space to be very inventive,they didn't merely bounce around familiar ideas,but twisted them around some,at about 1:50 Weir is playing something akin to Girl From Impanema while Jerry plays sharp mutron space licks in return,a beautiful contrast.At about 4 minutes an O1 jam slides into a spanish jam which morphs into a unique flamenco style O1 jam,it's really strong.This space is everything space should have been,I lose interest in the bulk of them because they are usually not interesting,and I really don't enjoy the mutron folder effect for the most part,I found their use of gadgetry to be a band-aid for lack of creativity.

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Poster: billydlions Date: Aug 3, 2011 4:49am
Forum: GratefulDead Subject: Re: What Do You Like About The 80's ?

I've always liked the space jam from 10-31-83 the best from that tour. It's not really space, but a pre-Stephen jam that really goes places. I'm sure you've heard it but if not give it a try. The fall tour from 1983 is (IMHO) the last great tour for the band. It's not as good as the spring or fall tour of 1981, but perhaps the equal of the summer tour from 1982. It seems like Jerry raised his level of play during the JGB shows from June and kept it up all the all the way through 10/31. When I think of 80's dead, it's really Aug 1980- Oct 1983.

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Poster: AltheaRose Date: Aug 3, 2011 5:18am
Forum: GratefulDead Subject: Re: What Do You Like About The 80's ?

Definitely. I like that show, but it seems to be kind of under the radar. It's a great drums > space, and also different, cuz it's with Airto, as I recall. Last St Stephen. I agree that's a fine tour; IMO June 85 is quite good, too, if you don't mind frogs.

This post was modified by AltheaRose on 2011-08-03 12:18:19

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Poster: light into ashes Date: Aug 3, 2011 12:37pm
Forum: GratefulDead Subject: Re: What Do You Like About The 80's ?

10-31-83 is a good Space - different feel, a lot wilder - the drummers keep going, in fact they try to take over the Space, so it doesn't have the same gentle Bob/Jerry duet thing going. (Kind of interesting that Airto just leaves in the middle of Space, too, just when you think he's getting going...)
http://www.archive.org/details/gd83-10-31.sbd.gardner.3827.sbeok.shnf

'83 is not necessarily as sharp as '82 was, but I think a lot of it (esp from the second half) is really enjoyable.
'84 has some really interesting jams too - a lot of people kind of "sign off" after '83, but some of the jams in '84 have this really dark & dreamy feel that I like.